The former Liverpool forward Daniel Sturridge has earned a four-month football ban following a decision by an independent appeal board.
Sturridge ended his existing contract with Trabzonspor of the Turkish Super Lig on Monday. He was originally given a six-week ban in the summer of 2019, with four weeks suspended, along with a fine of £75,000 fine. That punishment was handed out by an independent commission that found Sturridge was guilty of giving his brother ‘insider information’ by telling him to make a bet on a his transferring to Spanish club Sevilla in January 2018, although the transfer fell through.
But the FA said that the sanction was too light and appealed the decision to an appeal board, and the board have now agreed with the FA. They found that the commission had not properly applied the FA’s rules and further found that two charges against the player that had been originally dismissed were proven. These related to Rule E8(1)(b) which prohibits the passing on of any information that is not publicly available when any of those details are used in relation to betting.
Sturridge has served two weeks of the original suspension, so his ban will work out as slightly less than four months and will end on June 17. It will apply to all FIFA-sanctioned competitions.
In a statement, the FA welcomed the decision, confirming that Sturridge has been banned from all football-related activities until June 17:
“Following an appeal by the FA of the previous findings of the independent regulatory commission in this case, an independent appeal board has found that the regulatory commission misapplied the FA’s rules in relation to the use of inside information and made findings of fact which could not be sustained.”
The verdict was a double blow for Sturridge as the appeal board also increased the amount of the original fine from £75,000 to £150,000.